For the second year in a row, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers will open their preseason with consecutive road games. However, Buccaneer fans will be treated to their team playing on a national stage before it makes its 2017 home debut.
Tampa Bay's 2017 preseason begins with a trip to Cincinnati in Week One, a game that will be played in the range of dates from August 10-14. The following week, the Buccaneers and Jaguars will be featured on a Thursday night ESPN broadcast on August 17, with kickoff scheduled for 8:00 p.m. ET at Everbank Field.
The second half of the Bucs' preseason will be played at Raymond James Stadium, with the Cleveland Browns visiting in Week Three and the Washington Redskins wrapping it up in Week Four. The Bucs-Browns game will be played between August 24-27. The preseason finale against Washington will take place on Thursday, August 31 or Friday, September 1. Exact dates and kickoff times for the games in Weeks One, Three and Four will be announced at a later date.Tampa Bay Buccaneers' 2017 Preseason Opponents:Week One, Aug. 10-14: at Cincinnati (WFLA-TV)Week Two, Aug. 17: at Jacksonville, 8:00 p.m. ET (ESPN)Week Three, Aug. 24-27: vs. Cleveland (WFLA-TV)Week Four, Aug. 31- Sept. 1:vs. Washington (WFLA-TV)
Tampa Bay's 2017 preseason schedule is actually quite similar to the round of warm-up games it played last summer. After opening in Philadelphia, the team went to Jacksonville in Week Two and played host to Cleveland and Washington, respectively, in Weeks Three and Four.
The Buccaneers and Bengals have actually been relatively common foes in the preseason. The two teams last held an August meeting in 2015 (a 25-11 Buccaneer victory in Tampa), marking the 13th time they had played in the preseason. Tampa Bay owns a 9-4 record in those games, including a 2-1 mark in Cincinnati. The Bucs also hold a 7-4 edge over the Bengals in their all-time regular-season schedule.
Photos of some of the top players from each of the Buccaneers preseason opponents.
That said, the Bucs haven't gone to the Queen City for a summer contest in more than two decades. The last Buccaneers-Bengals preseason contest held in Cincinnati was in 1995, when former Bengals Head Coach Sam Wyche guided the Buccaneers to a 31-7 victory at Riverfront Stadium. Tampa Bay and Cincinnati last met in the regular season in 2014, a 14-13 Bengals win at Raymond James Stadium. The Bucs last trip to Cincinnati for a game of any kind came in 2010, when they took a 24-21 decision at Paul Brown Stadium.
The Jaguars have been one of the Bucs' most common preseason opponents since the divisional realignment in 2002. The two teams held their first preseason get-together that summer, a 20-0 Bucs win at ALLTEL Stadium (now Everbank Field) in Jacksonville. The Bucs and Jaguars have met in the preseason every year since with the exceptions of 2011, 2012, 2013 and 2015. Last year, Tampa Bay took the Week Two game in Jacksonville by a 27-21 score, though the Jaguars still lead the all-time series, 7-4.
The Browns will be the Buccaneers' Week Three preseason opponent for the third straight year, with all three games played in Tampa. Cleveland prevailed in 2015, 31-7, but the Bucs answered with a 30-13 victory last summer. Tampa Bay leads the all-time preseason series, 5-4.
This also marks the sixth time in the last seven years that the Buccaneers and Redskins will close out their season together, a run that began in 2011 and was only interrupted in 2015. Washington's 20-13 victory at Raymond James Stadium last year improved its lead in the all-time preseason series with Tampa Bay to 10-5.